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Therapeutic and cytotoxic effects of the novel antipsoriasis codrug, naproxyl-dithranol, on HaCaT cells

Lau, W. M., Ng, K. W., White, A. W. and Heard, C. M. (2011) Therapeutic and cytotoxic effects of the novel antipsoriasis codrug, naproxyl-dithranol, on HaCaT cells. Molecular Pharmaceutics, 8 (6). pp. 2398-2407. ISSN 1543-8392

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To link to this item DOI: 10.1021/mp200327k


A novel topical codrug, naproxyl–dithranol (Nap-DTH), in which dithranol and naproxen are linked via an ester in a 1:1 ratio to form a single chemical entity, was synthesized. The antiproliferative, anti-inflammatory and toxic effects of Nap-DTH were assessed, at the cellular level, using various in vitro methods. Cultured HaCaT keratinocytes were treated with Nap-DTH, and the cellular effects were compared with those of the parent compounds, individually and as a 1:1 mixture of naproxen:dithranol to mimic 1:1 in situ liberation from Nap-DTH. The results demonstrate that Nap-DTH did not modify proliferation and only exhibited slight toxic effects after 24 h at concentrations >21 μM. At a lower concentration (3.4 μM), Nap-DTH did not alter cell proliferation or inflammation, which suggests that the codrug is therapeutically inert. Relating to this, the 1:1 mixture of naproxen:dithranol exhibited the lowest toxic effect and the highest antiproliferative effect on HaCaT keratinocytes compared to dithranol at the same concentration. Moreover, the 1:1 mixture exhibited a reduced inflammatory effect compared to dithranol alone, as reflected by the upregulation of cyclooxygenase-2 by 45% and 136%, respectively. In spite of the 1:1 mixture showing a greater downregulation of Ki-67 and a 2-fold reduction of proliferating cell nuclear antigen (both cellular markers of proliferation) than dithranol, dithranol showed a much greater induction of cleaved caspase-3 protein expression (upregulated by 287%, compared to 85% for the 1:1 mixture). This suggests that when dithranol was administered with naproxen, inhibition of cell growth plays a more important role in the antiproliferation effects than the induction of apoptotic cell death. These results confirm that the codrug would lead to a better therapeutic profile and fewer adverse effects compared to its parent compounds.

Item Type:Article
Divisions:Life Sciences > School of Chemistry, Food and Pharmacy > School of Pharmacy > Pharmaceutics Research Group
ID Code:24261
Publisher:American Chemical Society

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